Elizabeth Shriver: Large Floral Pod, alternative view, 2011
Clémence van Lunen exhibition / Galerie NeC, Hong Kong
October 5 - November 18, 2012
Opening: Thursday, October 4, from 6 pm.
"Sculpture, polyglot, curious and on the alert, fascinated by the countries which she has discovered, cultures and languages which she practises and likes, Clémence Van Lunen is a renaissance woman. She develops multiple works which could be defined as high curiosity in the same sense we sometimes describe ancient amateurs cabinet, but in her case it is in an eclectic and knowledgable way. The art critic and exhibition curator Frédéric Bodet wrote about her work, "rare forms are expressed with an indecisive act, dedicated to the enjoyment as much as to the dismay that she constantly tries to disturb us, her sculptures evoke a sort of sympathy which makes you stop and hesitate."
Her invitation to Sèvres in 2007 - that allowed me to get to know her better - stood out as an evidence, as a necessary stage for her after her travels a round the world and her research in ceramics.
On her return from one of her regular travels to China, she proposed at Cité de la céramique a universe of porcelain dragons (she chose on purpose the most symbolic animal of China), with the determination to produce them all herself with an never before used experimental mixture of porcelain pastas from our mill.
Compositions of a series of porcelain elements turned, deformed then wrapped up, gathered in an experimental way and delicately assembled, the monumental sculptures required the traditional techniques of production but, however, adapted in a personal and creative way. She then imagined an centre piece , consisting of several elements of biscuit which was built up of a small «archipelago» on a table, like so many islands with strange plants; it was an invitation to a new journey!
Her experience at la Cité de la céramique illustrates perfectly its capacity to create a gateway, to imagine formal round trips, cultural and aesthetic juxtapositions, which are her trademark and her talent.”
David Caméo, Director of Sèvres, Cité de la Ceramique France
Arina Ailincăi: IN-SCRIPTED BODY / Art on the Avenue Gallery, Philadelphia, PA
September 14 - October 7, 2012
Opening Reception: Friday, September 14, 5:30 - 8:30 pm.
Art on the Avenue Gallery, at 3808 Lancaster Avenue, is pleased to present Arina Ailincăi: IN-SCRIPTED BODY, a solo sculpture exhibition featuring recent works in clay of this noteworthy international artist.
Arina Ailincăi is a truly international artist. Raised and educated in Romania, she began her artistic career in Eastern Europe. In the 1980s she crossed the Atlantic and settled in Canada, where she was soon acknowledged as one of its most talented artists working in clay. At that time she also exhibited and lectured in the United States. Over the last several years, she has been invited to work, exhibit and lecture at major ceramic art centers and international events throughout Europe, including Denmark, Estonia, Latvia, France, Italy, Germany, Switzerland, Hungary, Romania, Croatia and Turkey. Most recently she has held residencies in China, Taiwan, Japan and South Korea.
Arina Ailincăi’s art focuses on the human figure, with the body cast using real bodies - often her own. The closeresemblance of the ceramic sculpture to the actual body is only a starting point for her deeper exploration of the universal human condition as an embodied self. Ailincai’s sculptures in clay are philosophically and metaphorically charged. The markings on the outer surface and the mysterious inscriptions in the hollow interior of the body transform the replica of a particular individual into an archetypal human vessel, holding the traces of inner life, time, place and history.
"My desire is to “write” a three dimensional poem to both the fragile physical body and the intangible world of our inner existence. I translate this desire into ceramic sculpture through the use of faithfully replicated, life-size clay body-casts and fragments. I press the clay into the plaster mold to create ”the shell," a hollowed out body shape: an empty vessel containing the inner self, with its personal and universal history. The scripts imprinted on the interior walls of the shell, acquire symbolic and metaphoric dimensions, becoming a palimpsest of the entire human existence. While most of my works are made in clay, I make use of other materials and techniques, often combining drawing and photography in my installations. I want to synthesize two-dimensional and three-dimensional vocabularies into a visual language charged with meaning, which directs the viewers to sense their location, both within and without.” Arina Ailincăi
Ruth Duckworth exhibition / Erskine Hall & Coe, London
September 5 - October 4, 2012
Erskine, Hall & Coe are pleased to announce the exhibition of the celebrated contemporary sculptor, Ruth Duckworth.
The exhibition includes 22 artworks in bronze, porcelain and stoneware. The earliest dates from 1965 but the majority of pieces are from the period of late 1980s through to work completed in the final year of Duckworth’s life. The gallery has been working closely with Thea Burger, who represents the Duckworth Estate.
Writing in her essay to accompany the exhibition Thea Burger states:
“Duckworth was a modernist sculptor who loved form. She was not about colour, but was about the subtle shape of her pieces. Her forms are typically created in porcelain, stoneware, or bronze. Much admired, she has art works in most of the world’s most prestigious museums, including the Metropolitan Museum in New York, the Los Angeles Country Museum, the Victoria and Albert, the Stedelijk Museum, and the Tokyo Museum of Art.”
In Ruth Duckworth, Modernist Sculptor written by Jo Lauria and Tony Birks, Duckworth talks of her process of creating a sculpture: Ruth Duckworth Porcelain.
“Play is the essence of creativity. Creative play and gut reaction, instinct. When I work on a piece, I play. I have a whole huge section of the studio where I have an inventory of sculptural forms, simple, abstract, non-specific shapes that I find beautiful and enjoy making. Then I start building these shapes together. And when I find myself smiling, I say “hello!” I think I’ve got something. The process is intuitive, not intellectual. You have to learn to be spontaneous and trust yourself.”
Download the catalogue of the exhibition or view the catalogue online.
Bharti Kher / Parasol unit foundation for contemporary art, London
September 14 – November 11, 2012
Preview: 13 September 2012, 6.30 – 9 pm.
Parasol unit foundation for contemporary art is delighted to present works by Bharti Kher in her first solo exhibition held in a public art institution in London. The exhibition is composed of a selection of works from the recent past, with an emphasis on the artist’s sculptural works.
Known for her extensive use of everyday, found objects and imaginatively transforming their identity, Kher empowers her often otherworldly creations to present themselves unabashedly as if they were a natural part of our culture and environment. Kher’s work often explores the notion of the self as a multiple, open to interpretation and shape-shifting. Her art practice is intimately intertwined with her life, not only because she borrows motifs and artifacts for her work, but also because she has an inquisitive mind and a strong desire to understand sociological issues. Such characteristics endow Kher’s work with a narrative quality and fascinating interiority of things that frequently contradict her practice of addressing more global and collective concerns. This tension is precisely what leads us more deeply into Kher’s work and world and prompts us to reposition our own relationship to her individual pieces.
Kher is perhaps best known for her elaborate and stunning bindi dot paintings: abstract, swirling constellations of colourful bindis glued to flat surfaces that create unique imagery somewhere between being illusory and hyper-realistic. But in recent years her artistic creations have become increasingly bold and unrestrained, several examples of which are on show in the exhibition. The phenomenal, life-size elephant that is The skin speaks a language not its own, 2006, made of fibreglass and covered with serpent - or sperm-shaped white bindis, bears a symbolism that leaves viewers uncertain about the animal’s condition. The title of the work, always an important component of Kher’s works, suggests that physical appearance and inner values are often in conflict.
Rosemarie Trockel: A Cosmos / NEW MUSEUM, New York
October 24, 2012 - January 13, 2013
Co-curated by Rosemarie Trockel and Lynne Cooke for the Museo Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, “Rosemarie Trockel: A Cosmos”—encompassing all three main gallery floors of the New Museum building on the Bowery—will present a world shaped by Trockel’s ideas, interests, and affinities. Instead of a traditional retrospective, this exhibition takes the form of an artistic self-portrait in which Trockel’s work shares space with objects that have influenced her thinking and her practice. Spanning different eras and cultures, “A Cosmos” brings together objects from disparate fields to compose a cartography of Trockel’s influences.
Since the early 1970s, Rosemarie Trockel has produced an impressive body of work that includes drawing, collage, installation, “knit paintings,” ceramics, videos, furniture, clothing, and books. She brings together a range of associations and references from art history, philosophy, theology, and the natural sciences. For “A Cosmos,” the dense field of Trockel’s influences will be articulated in installations that illuminate the intellectual and formal connections between her practice and that of a range of historical figures including self-taught artists James Castle and Morton Bartlett, and the botanist/mathematician José Celestino Mutis. Objects whose impetus was primarily aesthetic will be juxtaposed with pieces that more conventionally belong to the realm of science. Trockel’s roughhewn glazed ceramics from the past several years will be displayed in conjunction with Leopold and Rudolph Blaschka’s delicate glass models of sea creatures created in the nineteenth century. A selection of new drawings by Trockel can be examined along with watercolors by the seventeenth-century artist Maria Sybilla Merian, whose impeccably precise yet beautiful renderings of flora and fauna proved invaluable to scientific study.
Trockel’s well-known disregard for the conventional hierarchies in the visual arts, together with her longstanding appreciation of media and materials once categorized as crafts or vernacular art forms, is demonstrated throughout the exhibition. She has adopted a fluid and radical approach to gender, combining activities typically considered feminine in terms of production with aggressive mechanical and industrial forms. This facet of her practice is emphasized through the inclusion of Judith Scott’s obsessively wrapped yarn sculptures alongside Ruth Francken’s plastic and metal assemblages from the 1970s. In addition, Trockel’s celebrated “knit paintings” will be integrated into the exhibition, along with new works made of glass.
Rosemarie Trockel was born in 1952 in Schwerte, Germany. She studied at the Kölner Werkschulen in Cologne, Germany. Since 1998, she has been a professor at the Staatliche Kunstakademie Düsseldorf. She lives and works in Cologne.
Marek Cecuła: SEEDS / Glass and Ceramics Gallery, Wrocław, Poland
September 13 - October 10, 2012
Opening reception: Thursday, September 13, 18.00 pm.
The modern reality evokes more and more catastrophic visions, not as much of the end of the world perhaps, but rather of the decline of the world as we know it. Last century’s escalating occurrence of natural disasters and the worryingly fast degradation of the environment are food for thought, resulting in the eco trends on the one hand, and growing speculation crowned with the prophecies of the demise of civilization on the other.
In this situation, we are more thorough in creating architecture which is resistant to the most severe disasters, buying insurance policies which will hypothetically safeguard our future. We assume optimistically that we will somehow survive and manage to preserve our civilization.
In his latest project entitled “Seeds – the art of survival”, Marek Cecuła goes a step further, envisaging the annihilation of humankind in his vision of the future. However, he assumes that it is possible to preserve the material which enables Rebirth, as well as substances and tools needed for further functioning. All which is needed to that end is finding a form, a capsule made of an ultra-resistant material guaranteeing the preservation of the survival substance. The nature suggests a solution – the “seeds” are based on actual plant seeds, while their outer texture brings to mind the exceptionally durable diamond. The material used by the artist to generate his “seeds” is ceramics, whose durability is proved by archaeological excavations, which allow us to track down the development of civilization from the prehistoric times, through antiquity, to the modern era.
The exhibition in Wrocław’s BWA Glass and Ceramics Gallery blends art and science. Building terror and suspense, Cecuła shows the viewers real materials from the sites of natural disasters, statistics and scientific data presenting the real picture of what we are threatened with, a detailed description of the material used in building the seeds, and finally the main hero, together with the contents guaranteeing – according to the artist – the survival of substances ensuring Rebirth. There is no space left for any valuable objects representing our culture or development of civilization, there are no technological gizmos. Cecuła refers to the sources of life, only intending to preserve the existence of live matter which would allow an evolutionary revival of the civilization. The exhibition presents twenty large and twenty small “seeds”. Each is composed of two airtight elements. In its final version, the project is planned to contain a hundred such forms to be distributed all over the planet in order to secure the ultimate survival. The design of the “seeds”, their aesthetic form, is supposed to evoke a sense of security and hope for Rebirth.
Scandinavian Design / Museum of Fine Arts, Houston
August 26, 2012 – January 27, 2013
Scandinavian Design, drawn from the MFAH collection of decorative arts, showcases furniture, glass, ceramics, metalwork, and lighting from the 1920s to the 1970s. The MFAH first acquired examples of modern Finnish glass in 1954, and in recent years the museum has built on this history by acquiring outstanding objects by architects, designers and manufacturers such as Georg Jensen, Orrefors, Alvar Aalto, Bruno Mathsson, Kaj Franck, Timo Sarpaneva, Tapio Wirkkala, Poul Henningsen, Finn Juhl and Verner Panton.
The objects created by designers active in Denmark, Finland, Sweden and Norway during the 20th century embody a distinctive aesthetic typified by an emphasis on high-quality design distributed widely through mass production. Often Minimalist, and characterized by clean lines, the Scandinavian design movement originated with a 1950s design show that traveled to the United States and Canada to showcase Nordic designers and the “Scandinavian way of living.” Scandinavian design influenced the development of Modernism in North America and Europe, and it continues to shape decorative arts today.
This exhibition is organized by the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. Generous funding is provided by Dr. Marjorie G. Horning.
Entrance to this exhibition is included with the museum admission. MFAH Members receive free general admission.
Ceramics Now Team Exhibition / Europe Gallery, Braşov, Romania
1-14 September, 2012
Opening reception: Saturday, 1 September, 6 pm.
Ceramics Now Association has the pleasure to invite you to the group exhibition of Ceramics Now Magazine team. With this occasion, the courageous members of the team will exhibit together for the first time contemporary ceramics and glass works. The six exhibiting artists, five members of the team and one special guest, were bringed together by Vasi Hîrdo, founding editor of Ceramics Now.
Exhibiting artists: Andra Baban, Vasi Hîrdo, Alexandra Mureşan, Cora Pojaru, Anca Sânpetrean, Bogdan Teodorescu.
Curator: Vasi Hîrdo
After the success of the first two editions of Ceramics Now Exhibition organized in Cluj-Napoca (The Paintbrush Factory) and Bucharest (Galateea Gallery), this exhibition is prefacing the third edition of the international contemporary ceramics exhibition that will took place at the end of the year in Bucharest.
Ceramics Now Magazine is a comprehensive and innovative quarterly publication (online and print) specialized in contemporary ceramics. Founded in 2011, the magazine features interviews, articles, reviews and works of emerging and world-renowned ceramic artists. It is distributed all over the world in a network of libraries, galleries, museums and institutions.
Europe Gallery is administrated by the Romanian Fine Arts Union - Braşov Branch, and it’s located on 1 Mureşenilor street. The gallery is opened Monday to Saturday, between 12-19 pm. The exhibition can also be visited on Sunday, September the 2nd, between 12-19 pm.
Organized by Ceramics Now Association and the Romanian Fine Arts Union - Braşov Branch.
Download the press release of the exhibition: www.is.gd/teamexpo
The event on Facebook.
Louise Hindsgavl and Gitte Jungersen: Setting the Stage / Copenhagen Ceramics, Denmark
30 August - 22 September 2012
Opening reception: Thursday, 30 August, 5 – 8 pm.
Artist talk with Louise Hindsgavl and Gitte Jungersen: Saturday, 1 September, 2 pm.
For their upcoming exhibition at Copenhagen Ceramics – Setting the Stage – Louise Hindsgavl and Gitte Jungersen are each showing their variant of a contemporary version of the figurative ceramic tradition. They both share an interest in visually expressing the psychological aspects of life and their wish to reflect the inner life of humans in figurative works with elements of animal and human being.
From children’s books and fairy tales we are used to projecting human characteristics on to animals and so we likewise identify with the drama that takes place in the ceramic scenes of Jungersen and Hindsgavl.
The ceramic expression of Louise Hindsgavl and Gitte Jungersen differ widely. But each have, in their own way, revived the figurative tradition and renewed its relevance. The porcelain figure is a starting point for both, but the kitschy and banal references, that are normally attached to this genre, are replaced and transformed into underlying, more disquieting messages. The figure or the figurine – which plays an ever important rôle in the history of ceramics – often contains wit and humour and is of lesser scale than that of sculpture, is well suited for both artists’ commenting accounts on big and small dramas of life.
For the exhibition at Copenhagen Ceramics Gitte Jungersen has taken a new step. She has in recent years been transforming the stories of found, industrially produced, porcelain animals by inserting them through firing into new landscape-like ’scenes’. This feature of the earlier works is now to a large degree substituted by abstract structures made up of squared shapes. However, these otherwise stable forms are falling in, collapsing and broken at times. The dissolution is further emphasized by masses of glaze, that overflow the shapes as big blobs, partially erasing them. The scenes evoke a sensation of the uncontrollable and catastrophic, while the ceramic appear sensually specious and beautiful.
Glazes play a very special rôle in the works of Gitte Jungersen. She is known for her heavily sensual surfaces of great textural complexity. The bubbly surfaces of her pieces result from the glazes ’boiling’ at top temperature of the ceramic kiln and the subsequent rapid solidifying in the cooling-process. Thus the handling itself of the materials contributes to emphasizing the thematic content. Whether it’s a nearing dissolution awaiting or rather a new narrative in the making, is left open for you to decide.
Louise Hindsgavl’s contribution to the exhibition circles around the loss of innocence, the confusion and the transformation, that happens in the transition from childhood to becoming an adult. For this show, Hindsgavl has chosen to work with a totally different expression than her well-known porcelain-figures and their absurdist accounts about the darker recesses of the human mind. In recent years she has also experimented with including other materials and ready-mades in her porcelain tableaus. Now the pieces are bigger, of a coarser nature and with quite a different volume than she has mainly been using, but her works still invite to our ongoing discussion about pure and impure.
The work ’Luckys & Bunnys’ refers to the tale of Alice in Wonderland, where the child meets change in the shape of an unknown magical world and where the rabbit is the central element, pulling the child through its development.
Both artists have over many years been frequent exhibitors in Denmark and internationally.
Jean and Jacqueline Lerat Tribute / Galerie Capazza, Nançay, Paris
September 29 - December 2, 2012
Openning reception: Saturday, September 29th, 5-8 pm.
To welcome today the artworks of Jean and Jacqueline Lerat is an honor, a recognition. We are proud and moved to have published this book, and we will do our best to present «their treasures», which let us hope to deserve the confidence granted by François and Claire Lerat, their children.
Is it pretentious to consider the artwork as an haiku, a so marginal poem.
This is no about ceramics but creation.
I am not interested in the enamels skills. Skills, technique, are situated before creation. The structure maybe? As for the skeleton, you have to add something. Questions have been asked in a dense way.
Somehow, life has imposed.
Then, you could go from the “object situation” to the “creation situation”.
Jacqueline Lerat, May 5th, 1993
It is fundamental that beauty and meaning depend on the person who look at the piece as much as the quality of the work. The artist has the right to be misunderstood, privilege that «the official artist» refuses by his will to set up in advance the way people will per- ceive his work.
Modestly assuming their function, but always overflowing when they are admired, the ceramics of Jean and Jacqueline Lerat oppose the demanding nature of relationship to the whims of actuality…
Bernard Noël, extract of the book Jean et Jacqueline Lerat, éditions Galerie Capazza
Jean (1913-1992) and Jacqueline (1920-2009) LERAT Biography
Jean Lerat’s family is an old family from Berry (French province), where you can find farmers, cabinet makers, horse breeders, Antique dealers. Jean starts at the Fine Arts school in Bourges to learn wood sculpture. Then, he concentrates on sculpture, drawing and landscapes painting. The encounter with François Guillaume will change his life. Dealer, designer and crockery editor in Bourges since the 30’s, he has a lot of contacts with the ceramics and glass factories which realize his models for the French restaurants. He asks Jean Lerat to work in La Borne in 1941, to “renew the pottery tradition fo the village”. He rents a workshop and asks Armand Bedu to supply Jean with the needed materials and to fire the pieces that will be sold in the shop.
In December 1942, Jean Favière, who works at the Berry Museum, and Henri Malvaux, new director of the Fine Arts school in Bourges, start showing interest to the craft productions of la Borne. The village is already renowned by Parisian institutions (Museum of the Decorative Arts, Ceramics Museum of Sèvres) for its authenticity.
Henri Malvaux asks Jacqueline Bouvet to come to La Borne in July 1943. She is allowed to stay until May 1944 thanks to an agreement with François Guillaume. Jean and Jacqueline get married on February 3rd of 1945. They will work in the same place, but they will follow a personal path. But they share clay, enamels and firing.
In 1955 they moved to Bourges, building a new wood-firing kiln and beginning to create more sculptural and abstracted works. While an attentive observation should lead the collector to distinguish their style, they adopt a mutual signature JLERAT from 1945 to 1948, then JLERAT from 1948 to Jean’s death. After 1992, Jacqueline starts again to sign JLERAT.
Their collaboration in ceramics is considered to be among the most important in post- war France. Their teaching at the Ecole Nationale des Beaux Arts in Bourges has influen- ced new generations of potters.